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Visual acuity in an opportunistic raptor, the chimango caracara (Milvago chimango)

  • Simon Potier
  • Francesco Bonadonna
  • Almut Kelber
  • Olivier Duriez
Publishing year: 2016-01-25
Language: English
Pages: 125-128
Publication/Series: Physiology & Behavior
Volume: 157
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Elsevier

Abstract english

Raptors are always considered to have an extraordinary resolving power of their eyes (high visual acuity). Nevertheless, raptors differ in their diet and foraging tactics, which could lead to large differences in visual acuity. The visual acuity of an opportunist bird of prey, the Chimango caracara (Mivalgo chimango) was estimated by operant conditioning. Three birds were trained to discriminate two stimuli, a positive grey uniform pattern and a negative grating pattern stimulus. The visual acuity range from 15.08 to 39.83 cycles/degrees. When compared to other birds, they have a higher visual acuity than non-raptorial birds, but they have the lowest visual acuity found in bird of prey so far. We discuss this result in the context of the ecology of the bird, with special focus on it is foraging tactic.


  • Zoology
  • operant conditioning


  • Lund Vision Group
  • ISSN: 1873-507X
Simon Potier
E-mail: simon [dot] potier [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se

Postdoctoral fellow

Functional zoology


Research group

Lund Vision Group


Bird visual ecology

Postdoc host

Almut Kelber

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